Chris Hoban, R&B Distillers, Edinburgh


As Brand Ambassador for R&B Distillers, Chris Hoban has the enviable job of talking about whiskey night and day. His early years working at the Scotch Whiskey Experience, the famous whiskey tourist attraction in Edinburgh, paved the way. R&B are in the process of creating their first distillery on the island of Raasay just across from Skye, with another one to follow in the Borders.

The owner’s great-grandfather had been a master blender in the early 19th Century. Finding his old recipe book was the impetus to establishing R&B Distillery. They’ve already blended two batches of their award-winning limited-edition Raasay While We Wait in preparation for the distillery to be up and running this summer.

Where you can hear me drinking next:
Next up on Best Sips, […]

May 2nd, 2017|Best Sips Worldwide|0 Comments

Alfonso Califano, The Walrus Room, London

The mix of Alfonso Califano’s over-the-top enthusiasm and his inherent Italian hospitality is drawing them south of the river, before you can even say Alice in Wonderland. With his partner-in-cocktails, Simone de Luca, Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender UK semi-finalist, The Walrus Room, the Lewis Carroll inspired spot on Battersea Rise, is quickly becoming a player in London bar scene.


Alfonso grew up in tiny Pagani, Italy where community is everything, today he reveals how he made a city as big as London feel as small as his hometown. In the six months that he has been at The Walrus Room, the bar has gone from success to success. Of course, he loves when he pulls in the punters from trendier parts of town, but […]

April 25th, 2017|Best Sips Worldwide|0 Comments

Best Bits London: 10 Great Stalls at Portobello Road Antique Market

It’s hard not to compare Portobello Market today with what it used to be, even just ten years ago. Gone are the days when you would see stalls lining the streets with tables laden with knick-knacks next to silver next to china. Arcades stuffed with antique jewelry have given way to pies shops, cupcake cafes and high street fashions. Most of the dealers I knew are long gone – some selling online or at fairs all over the country, but no longer at home on Portobello Road.

Saying all that, it’s not all doom and gloom. The Cypriot and I decided to head down to Portobello Market last Saturday to see if there were anything we could find among the global brands that had moved in.
Happily we […]

April 21st, 2017|Destinations, London, United Kingdom|0 Comments

The Nordic Alliance, Cocktails in the City, London

At this year’s Cocktails in the City, one of London’s premier cocktail events, Andrew Scutts, its founder, thought it was hygge time. Nordic TV, food, culture have fascinated us since Sarah Lund put on that woolly jumper. Our four guests this week each took five minutes out of their busy CITC schedule to talk to us about their city-changing bar. […]

April 18th, 2017|Best Sips Worldwide|0 Comments

A Bit of Denmark: 5 Unmissable Bits of Copenhagen

Summer in Copenhagen, just writing the phrase has me humming along to the dulcet harmonies of Danny Kaye as Hans Christian Andersen heading in for a visit. The days are endless, Tivoli is open and everyone is outside enjoying the fast, few months of warm weather.  Don’t miss it – it’s only an hour and a half flight from London!


Here are my 5 unmissable Best Bits of Denmark’s capital city:

Tivioli is a must – no matter how old you are! The park has been in existence for 174 years! I love that it’s founder created it because “when the people are amusing themselves, they do not think about politics”. I am happy to report the words Brexit or Obamacare did not pass our lips while on […]

April 14th, 2017|Copenhagen, Denmark, Destinations|1 Comment

Jean-Christophe Gremillet, Champagne Gremillet, Balnot sur Laignes

A true family venture, Champagne Gremillet, was born when Grandmother Lulu planted those first vines in 1978. In the past, the Aube region where Gremillet sits, was considered second class to their northern friends near Marne and Épernay. They were the farmers, not the blenders.

It took a riot in 1911, when the big houses in the north, tried to exclude the Aube from Champagne appellation. Only later in 1927 was the region fully included. Silly as the best Pinot Noir grapes are found there. I leave it to Jean-Christophe to tell you the rest of the family history!

Where you can hear me drinking next:
We went live to Cocktails in the City London last week to meet the master mixologists invited from a Nordic country near […]

April 11th, 2017|Best Sips Worldwide|0 Comments